Mother’s Day

Mom’s Many Gifts to Me

mom donnie & larry

If I were hanged on the highest hill,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

I know whose love would follow me still,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were drowned in the deepest sea,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

I know whose tears would come down to me,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were damned of body and soul,  

I know whose prayers would make me whole,  

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

Rudyard Kipling

 

 

My Mom died on Easter Sunday in 1984, age 48.  Her second bout with breast cancer took her life, she having survived a first round in 1972.  She told me at that time that she asked God to spare her life until her two boys, my brother and I, were settled in life, and so He did.

Mom had fiery red hair and a tempestuous temperament to match.  When she was a child one of her colleagues at school made the mistake of chanting at her “Fox in the bread box, eating all the cheese!”, and Mom clocked her.  Growing up it was a rare day when I didn’t receive at least one slap, which I had always earned, and one hug, which I rarely earned.  Mom always wore her heart on her sleeve and that fact brought excitement to my life while growing up which I greatly enjoyed.

Mom was a talker.  My laconic father said on occasion that Mom did the talking for both of them and I think that was true.  My brother, who had both Mom’s hair and disposition, also liked to talk and so did I.  When the three of us got going it was an interesting melding of three non-stop monologues. →']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

Saint Augustine: To the Mother of God

 

O blessed Virgin Mary, who can worthily repay thee thy just dues of praise and thanksgiving, thou who by the wondrous assent of thy will didst rescue a fallen world?  What songs of praise can our weak human nature recite in thy honor, since it is by thy intervention alone that it has found the way to restoration.  Accept, then, such poor thanks as we have here to offer, though they be unequal to thy merits; and receiving our vows, obtain by thy prayers the remission of our offenses.  Carry thou our prayers within the sanctuary of the heavenly audience, and bring forth from it the antidote of our reconciliation.  May the sins we bring before Almighty God through thee, become pardonable through thee; may what we ask for with sure confidence, through thee be granted.  Take our offering, grant us our requests, obtain pardon for what we fear, for thou art the sole hope of sinners.  Through thee we hope for the remission of our sins, and in thee, O blessed Lady, is our hope of reward.  Holy Mary, succour the miserable, help the fainthearted, comfort the sorrowful, pray for thy people, plead for the clergy, intercede for all women consecrated to God; may all who keep thy holy commemoration feel now thy help and protection.  Be thou ever ready to assist us when we pray, and bring back to us the answers to our prayers.  Make it thy continual care to pray for the people of God, thou who, blessed by God, didst merit to bear the Redeemer of the world, who liveth and reigneth, world without end.  Amen.

Ann Marie Jarvis, West Virginia and Mother’s Day

Today is Mother’s Day in the US, a time when we honor those women who go through the pains of pregnancy to bring us all into this life.  It all began with a feisty West Virginia mom, Ann Marie Jarvis.  Born in 1832, Ann Marie Reeves was the daughter of a Methodist minister who in 1843 was transferred to Phillipi in what would become West Virginia.  In 1850 she married Granville Jarvis, the son of a Baptist minister.  Together they would have eleven children, although tragically only four lived to adulthood, a not uncommon occurrence in those days when modern medicine was in its infancy.

A born reformer, in 1858 Ann Marie Jarvis founded in Western Virginia, Mothers Work Clubs that worked to improve sanitation, health and to care for indigent families.  During the Civil War she proclaimed the neutrality of her clubs, and they aided Union and Confederate soldiers alike, providing nurses to them during outbreaks of camp diseases like typhoid fever and measles, the great killer of soldiers during the War.

After the war she helped organize Mother’s Friendship Day in West Virginia to help heal the divisions of the War.  During the celebrations Union and Confederate veterans would participate and the bands would play both The Star Spangled Banner and Dixie.

This remarkable woman continued her good works throughout her life and died in 1905.  She often expressed a desire for a  day to honor all mothers.  After her death her daughter carried out her wishes by celebrating the first Mother’s Day in Grafton, West Virginia in 1907.  She headed a national campaign that culminated in President Wilson declaring Mother’s Day a national holiday in 1914.

The daughter of Ann Marie Jarvis,  Anna Marie Jarvis, grew to regret the commercialization of Mother’s Day.  She despised the habit of buying greeting cards for mothers as being a sign of people being too lazy to write a letter to their mothers. →']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

Mother O’ Mine

Mother Love

 

If I were hanged on the highest hill,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
    I know whose love would follow me still,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

    If I were drowned in the deepest sea,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
I know whose tears would come down to me,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

    If I were damned of body and soul,
    I know whose prayers would make me whole,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

Rudyard Kipling

Happy Birthday Bella!

 

 

Elizabeth Santorum at Hot Air reminds us that the Santorum household has a double reason to celebrate today:

Sunday is an important day in the Santorum house. On May 13th, we’ll be celebrating a birthday. My little sister, Bella, is turning four. As some of you can imagine, having seven kids in my family, we do a lot of birthday parties. Various sweets, party hats, and re-used gift bags are always floating around the house, waiting to be used in the next celebration. Our house is a happy one, full of life. That being said, Bella’s birthday is always uniquely joyful and the cause of grateful reflection. I say this because every year with Bella is a gift. Bella was born with a rare genetic condition called Trisomy 18. Of the 10% of babies with Trisomy 18 who survive birth, 90% won’t make it to their first birthday. When she was born, the prognosis was bleak. The odds were simply stacked against her.

 

Ten days after she was born, Bella came home from the hospital. As doctors explained to us how to best prepare for her death, we chose to celebrate her life. And we did, every, single day. I remember when we first brought Bella home; we hung a sign in our living room. It read, “Happy 1-Week Birthday Bella.” As the weeks went by, we changed the sign from 1 to 2 to 3 weeks. Eventually weeks turned into months and now, thanks be to God, years. We fought for her each step of the way, giving her every opportunity to do well. She beat the odds and has been doing so ever since.

 

As I reflect on this last year of her life, it has been amazing to see how many people Bella has touched and the issues that have been discussed in the public sphere as a result of her condition. In the middle of winter, when the world found out that Bella had been hospitalized, the response was overwhelming. Our inboxes and mailboxes were flooded with notes of encouragement, prayer, and support. People in all walks of life from around the country united around the witness of a three-year-old little girl. We even got notes that said, “I don’t agree with you politically, but thank you for being a voice for the special needs community.” She brought unity and refocused us on what was really important in the midst of a heated primary season. ']);" class="more-link">Continue reading

Mother O’ Mine

If I were hanged on the highest hill,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

I know whose love would follow me still,

   Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were drowned in the deepest sea,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

I know whose tears would come down to me,

Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were damned of body and soul,  

 I know whose prayers would make me whole,

   Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

Rudyard Kipling

 

Mother of Mine

If I were hanged on the highest hill,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
I know whose love would follow me still,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were drowned in the deepest sea,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!
I know whose tears would come down to me,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

If I were damned of body and soul,
I know whose prayers would make me whole,
Mother o’ mine, O mother o’ mine!

Rudyard Kipling

To all mothers among our commenters, contributors and readership, the happiest of Mother’s Days! 


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